Lot #7535
Apollo Lunar Traverse Gravimeter Experiment (TGE)

Incredibly rare MIT-built Lunar Traverse Gravimeter—one of four in existence, like that used on Apollo 17

Estimate: $100000+

The 30 Minute Rule begins October 20 at 7:00 PM EDT. An Initial Bid Must Be Placed By October 20 at 6:00 PM EDT To Participate After 6:00 PM EDT

Server Time: 10/02/2022 03:44:08 PM EDT

Description

Incredibly rare MIT-built Lunar Traverse Gravimeter—one of four in existence, like that used on Apollo 17

Absolutely amazing Lunar Traverse Gravimeter, a production representative example of the same gravimeter used on the lunar surface during the Apollo 17 mission. The gold-plated unit measures approximately 9″ x 17″ x 8″, standing on three small legs, with a rotating carrying handle at the top, which was also used for locking the unit on the Lunar Rover. The gravimeter has no front panel so that the internal workings of the device may be viewed. The TGE had a nine-digit display to read out gravity and internal temperature. Also included is the gold-plated phase lock loop, 7″ x 6.5″ x 4″, serial numbers 010 and 011, as well as the plated spare battery pack assembly, serial number 010.

Built by the Instrumentation Laboratory at MIT, the purpose of the gravimeter was to measure the moon's gravitational field using a precise Vibrating String Accelerometer (VSA). While on the Moon, astronauts would move the device to different locations and take readings of the gravitational force. Packaged as part of Apollo 17's ALSEP package, the gravimeter was housed on the geopallet of the lunar rover. Only three other gravimeters are known to exist: one left on the lunar surface by Apollo 17, the mission's back-up at the Smithsonian, and one other at Columbia University.

This piece will be crated and shipped from California; the buyer is responsible for all associated costs.

Auction Info

  • Auction Title: Space Exploration
  • Dates: September 22, 2022 - October 20, 2022